Joseph Campbell's classic cross-cultural study of the hero's journey has inspired millions and opened up new areas of research and exploration. Originally published in 1949, the book hit the New York Times best-seller list in 1988 when it became the subject of The Power of Myth, a PBS television special. The first popular work to combine the spiritual and psychological insights of modern psychoanalysis with the archetypes of world mythology, the book creates a roadmap for navigating the frustrating path of contemporary life ...
Joseph Campbell's classic cross-cultural study of the hero's journey has inspired millions and opened up new areas of research and exploration. Originally published in 1949, the book hit the New York Times best-seller list in 1988 when it became the subject of The Power of Myth, a PBS television special. The first popular work to combine the spiritual and psychological insights of modern psychoanalysis with the archetypes of world mythology, the book creates a roadmap for navigating the frustrating path of contemporary life. Examining heroic myths in the light of modern psychology, it considers not only the patterns and stages of mythology but also its relevance to our lives today--and to the life of any person seeking a fully realized existence. Myth, according to Campbell, is the projection of a culture's dreams onto a large screen; Campbell's book, like Star Wars, the film it helped inspire, is an exploration of the big-picture moments from the stage that is our world. It is a must-have resource for both experienced students of mythology and the explorer just beginning to approach myth as a source of knowledge.
This book was like new and the seller took care in sending it. Loved the pkg. stickers
Feb 11, 2011
I was interested in reading this book after reading The Power of Myth last year, by the same author. Whereas the Power of Myth was essentially an overview of Cambell's work, this book is a deeper, more specific study. One of the best things about it is how it illustrates the major arguments by including large selections of many myths from all over the world.
Aug 27, 2009
Though not designed for this purpose, it is a great book to read while taking an improv class. One can substitute the word improv for mythology in a few of the paragraphs and it still makes sense!
Dec 7, 2007
A delightful adventure
Originally written in 1949, this book has become a classic, wielding an influence at least as great as that of Sir James Frazer's The Golden Bough. Many prominent people have admitted being influenced by it, including filmmaker George Lucas, who read it after completing the draft of the first "Star Wars" movie and went back and revised his screenplay to more-closely follow Campbell's ideas. Campbell's thesis was that all cultural and religious myths were basically the same; that is, they generally conformed to a universal model, which Campbell claimed has remained remarkably constant throughout mankind's history. Campbell also agreed with Sigmund Freud and Robert Graves that myths are deliberately disguised, so that only the enlightened understand them. What we see superficially as an astounding story contains a deep, fundamental concept of mankind's most basic nature. As an explanation of why this universal aspect exists, Campbell further maintained that we all have hero-dreams that follow the same pattern: we are alone, we come upon a major obstacle, we overcome the problem, either through our own efforts or by the help of another, and suddenly find great peace and contentment. This is the universal hero-saga and any story that adheres to this outline will (properly told) strike a universal chord of sympathy. Campbell was extremely well-read and the book is a treasure-trove of folkloric anecdotes. One could call it a one-volume education in mythology. it is also beautifully written, with the grace of a poet and the skill of a masterly storyteller.
Oct 19, 2007
A good read...
I bought this to listen to while on a plane...it was something I thought about using when I teach...as I do teach units on heroes and myths. While the story was good...taking the hero myths and stories in all different directions...I would definitely recommend actually reading this and not listening to it. The language at times is complicated, and the ideas are too deep to listen to. Bottom line...great book...not so much in audio.
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